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Summer 2015 Brackenridge Program Information Session (P. Koehler) Topics to be addressed: Important dates. Who is eligible to apply? What do you need to.

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Presentation on theme: "Summer 2015 Brackenridge Program Information Session (P. Koehler) Topics to be addressed: Important dates. Who is eligible to apply? What do you need to."— Presentation transcript:

1 Summer 2015 Brackenridge Program Information Session (P. Koehler) Topics to be addressed: Important dates. Who is eligible to apply? What do you need to do to apply? What should you look for in a mentor? What makes an application competitive? How many Fellowships will be awarded? What does the Program expect of you? What can you expect of the Program? Answers to frequently asked questions.

2 Important dates Applications due: March 2, 2015 by 5 pm Notification of Awards: by April 3, 2015 Start of Program: May 11, 2015 Retreat at UP-Johnstown: May 11-13, 2015 Mid-Program Break: Week of June 29, 2015 End of Program: August 7, 2015

3 Who is eligible to apply? Full-time undergraduate students in good academic standing majoring in any field offered by any of the 11 schools on the Oakland campus which award undergraduate degrees. Seniors who graduate in August 2015 are eligible only if the delay in their graduation date is due for reasons other than their desire to participate in the Summer Brackenridge Program. Students who have held a Summer Brackenridge Fellowship before are eligible to apply but, other qualifications being equal, preference will be given to first-time applicants.

4 What do you need to do to apply? (Slide 1 of 2) Fill out the application form available on the UHC website: Submit this form along with a 2-3 page, double-spaced description of your proposed research project; it should emphasize your interests and goals, your past involvement in the project (if any), how you plan to acquire and analyze the information, how independent you expect to be in carrying out this project, and what you hope to gain from doing this project. Be sure to address the “So what?” question – why is this project important, not only to you but in a larger context? Explain everything in a way that would be clear to an educated person outside your field. Avoid excessive use of technical jargon.

5 What do you need to do to apply? (Slide 2 of 2) Submit an up-to-date transcript (an unofficial one is acceptable as long as it shows your major(s), minor(s), credits, and GPA). Provide a brief written commentary indicating why you are interested in the interdisciplinary community fostered by the weekly Brackenridge seminars, the faculty lectures, and the retreat at the University of Pittsburgh – Johnstown. Provide a letter from your faculty mentor indicating support for your project and a willingness to oversee your work, an assessment of your ability to carry out the project and the degree of independence you will have. This letter may either be submitted (in a sealed envelope) along with your other materials or be sent electronically directly to P. Koehler. Note: all items you submit along with your application form must have your name on it (in case they get separated).

6 What should you look for in a mentor? Since you will be carrying out a research project, your mentor should be experienced and actively involved in research. “Experienced in research” usually is taken to mean that this person has at least earned a PhD or other terminal degree in her/his discipline. “Faculty member” need not be restricted to someone at the rank of Assistant, Associate, or full Professor; but it should be someone who holds more than a one-year appointment on this campus. If you are uncertain whether the person you have in mind as a mentor is an appropriate choice, contact P. Koehler.

7 What makes an application competitive? The applicant’s academic record. The mentor’s assessment of the project’s importance and the applicant’s ability to carry it out. The originality and promise of the proposed research project (which may be analytic or purely creative). The clarity and accessibility of the project description to a person outside of your field. The applicant’s willingness to help create and participate in the interdisciplinary community of students in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and applied disciplines.

8 How many Fellowships will be awarded? Approximately Fellowships will be awarded, distributed roughly equally among students in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and applied disciplines.

9 What does the Program expect of you? Your full-time commitment to your project and the associated activities described below for the duration of the Summer 2015 Brackenridge Program. Attendance and participation at the weekly seminar sessions. Attendance and participation at the (roughly) weekly talks given by some of the faculty mentors, which traditionally take place on Mondays (time TBA). Attendance and participation at the 2½ day retreat held at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown campus.

10 What can you expect of the Program? $3,500 stipend. A great research experience for an entire summer without the usual distractions of other responsibilities or the need to get a summer job. Learning how to prepare and deliver a presentation of a research project. As an added challenge, you will be required to learn how to explain your project to a general audience instead of a group of experts in the subject. In return, you will learn from the other Brackenridge Fellows about their projects, which will likely include fields that you may not have known anything about.

11 Answers to frequently asked questions Is there a minimum GPA requirement? No, the decision is based on all aspects of the application. Are Fellows provided with housing in addition to the $3,500 stipend? No, except during the retreat at UP-Johnstown. Are Fellows allowed to take a summer course? No. Are Fellows allowed to take a summer job? No. May I take a vacation during the Program? No, unless it coincides with the Mid-Program Break. May I apply for a Brackenridge Fellowship and an HCHS Fellowship and an Arts & Sciences Summer Undergraduate Research Award? Yes, but if offered more than one you have to choose one of them. How is the stipend paid? In 3 equal installments (end of May, June, and July) provided you take care of the paperwork before the end of April.


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